One of the things I am learning is that there is always a reason to celebrate and sometimes, waiting until everything falls into place is just stupid.
Although it's been over a year since I signed with a great literary agent and more than six months since I got the news I had sold my first novel to Random House, I had chosen to celebrate these milestones with casual toasts here and there but nothing more elaborate. When friends offered to get a group together for drinks, I put them off. "Let's wait until..." and then I would rattle off one of many reasons I felt the need to hold off from getting the contract signed to turning in a round of edits on July 1st.
I'm not sure what I was waiting for...the actual publication which won't happen until well into 2009.
Well, the waiting is over. On Friday, my friend Donna hosted a small gathering of friends at her house for an evening filled with great food including a chocolate bundt cake (it's in the book!), a beautiful outdoor deck with fully stocked bar, lots of good wishes, laughs and a short reading. The evening was truly a collaborative affair with my friend Christie contributing great recipes, quotes from my book, a KILLER game of literary jeopardy (in which I still can't believe I forgot Helen Fielding's name!) great appetizers and a signature cocktail (that is in addition to copy editing my July 1st revision for me!) Connie was the artist who worked with Donna to conceive the beautiful invitation (it opened like a book! -- see the image above) and who also rolled up her sleeves and assisted with the prep for the party. Donna, of course, was the ringleader, orchestrating all the pieces and cleaning her house for me (that's huge and my least favorite part of throwing a party!)
A great party is a like a great recipe, it just isn't the same without every ingredient and the special ingredient to this party were the people. What do you call a group of people who come from all over Long Island on a Friday after work to help me celebrate? I think you call them friends.
It's official -- I'm one lucky duck.